Boy Howdy, just when you think you’ve heard it all, Joey Chestnut comes along and eats more hot dogs in 10 minutes than I’ll eat in the next 10 years, someone wanting to be president of our great nation really thinks college can be free and startup companies here in America are actually growing meat in labs.
Here in cattle country “them’s fighten’ words,” but more stories about companies actually producing lab-grown meat are surfacing all the time.
A recent online news article began “Startups make meat that avoids slaughter.”
Memphis Meats is headquartered in California, (no surprise there) and is slowly perfecting the craft of actually growing meat in stem cell broth extracted from cow fetuses, calling it “cell-based meat;” test-tube-to-table so to speak.
A person involved with the company told the interviewer “People want meat; they don’t want slaughter, so we make slaughter-free meat.” (Also remember that someone also said, “We ourselves are responsible for the snow storm that produced all these snowflakes.”)
Now I have to admit, burying myself elbow-deep in innards to field dress a deer is not the highlight of my hunt, and I never particularly looked forward to sending a steer to the processing plant.
But with the first bite of grilled venison tenderloin or juicy T-bone steak, any and all twinges of apprehension dissolve like my deodorant on a Kansas August afternoon.
So, I’m trying to imagine what this will look like. Maybe I’ll walk into the lobby of a storefront that looks for all-the-world like an out-of-business dry cleaners and announce to the clerk “Hi, I’m here to pick up the three pounds of Kansas City strip I ordered 17 years ago.”
The clerk will press a button, the racks that used to hold the dry-cleaned clothing will revolve until out pop my steaks, hanging from the rack like a couple old welding gloves.
Or maybe I’ll have to don a hospital gown and hairnet and stroll through what looks like the maternity ward at a hospital, where row-after-row of large covered Petri dishes contain growing steaks and chops, all labeled with “birth dates” going back 15 years.
I’ll direct the “lab doctor’s” attention to a couple robust looking pork chops and a giant sirloin and head home with my “slaughter-free” meat.
I get it that God has programmed genetic information into seeds telling them what they will become; how else do you explain that a soybean seed grows another soybean plant and not an oak tree, etc. But how are stem cells from a cow fetus used to grow different cuts of meat, and chicken and fish as well for that matter?
Seems like the rib eye I order could just as easily grow into rocky mountain oysters.
And since I don’t ever foresee a practical way to collect stem cells or anything else for that matter from wild game animals, does that mean someone will eventually try to grow my venison back strap from cow fetus stem cells?
Look, I get that some folks want to eat plant-based meat, but God never meant for our meat to be grown in a lab. Even given the wonky, topsy-turvey thinking of parts of our society today, I don’t expect this lab-grown meat thing to ever catch on; but that’s what I once said about texting too.
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Steve can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org